BEA's Diamond helps to define web services

IT professionals could soon add the role of "application configurator" to their job descriptions according to BEA Systems.

IT professionals could soon add the role of  "application configurator" to their job descriptions according to BEA Systems.

The company's upcoming Diamond application deployment platform is designed for the service-oriented architecture (SOA). The application configurator would understand the services of applications and change metadata to enable routing of services to the right person.

For instance, the configurator might define rules related to the routing of purchase orders or specific types of users could be mapped to specific roles, said Vittorio Viarengo, BEA vice-president of product strategy and product management.

A major component of Diamond will be QuickSilver, which will act as a proxy and converge Enterprise Services Bus (ESB) and web services management capabilities, Viarengo said. QuickSilver would be the tool to route purchase orders, for example. 

Diamond is due to ship in 2005, with a beta version set for release between now and January, according to BEA.

QuickSilver for the time being, at least, gives BEA a leg up on IBM in managing multi-platform services, said Shawn Willett, principal analyst at Current Analysis. "I wouldn't be surprised that by the time this is being shipped that IBM has something in place" to rival it, Willett said. 

QuickSilver may become part of the BEA application server but the company has not finalised packaging details yet, Viarengo said. A key feature of QuickSilver will be its ability to include legacy technologies such as MQSeries or Tibco Software in SOAs. 

"You're basically bridging the old world with the new SOA world," said Viarengo.

"In QuickSilver, we change the design fulcrum, the design centre, and we said, let's start from the heterogeneous enterprise and let's look at the challenge that companies will have in managing this heterogeneous enterprise with an SOA," said Viarengo. "SOA, we believe, is really a great foundation for customers to move beyond integration into a highly compatible enterprise." 

BEA with its SOA plan leverages the Web Services Reliable Messaging specification as a messaging infrastructure to bridge into other systems. 

Paul Krill writes for InfoWorld

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